Welcome to the new Tate website.
Today we have launched updates to the Tate website (www.tate.org.uk) timed to coincide with the opening of the new building at Tate Modern on 17th June 2016 and as part of our Digital Strategy Update.
A Refresh – not a relaunch
The last redesign for tate.org.uk was in 2012, setting a new standard for websites in the museum sector and sealing Tate’s reputation as a leading digital player. In the past 3 years it has won multiple awards including Baftas, Webbys, Lovies, BIMAs and best in class from SXSW.
Previously, we’d have spent quite a long time designing the site and then building everything. We would only get the thoughts and opinions from Tate visitors once we’d launched it to the world.
This time we’ve taken a different approach and are not rebuilding the entire website all at once. Instead we have started by making improvements to some areas of the site. Working this way means that we’re able to deliver improvements faster, but that the old website and the new layout will exist side by side for a while.
We have focused on building responsively so that the website works better across mobile and tablet devices which is essential as visits from mobile and tablet devices now account for 36% of all traffic to tate.org.uk.
Any website needs to keep evolving to continue to meet audience expectations and benefit from new web technologies. We've got some big ambitions for Tate Digital, this is just the start of an exciting journey.
We’d like to highlight the areas that have changed; and the areas that we’re still working on.
Homepage & Navigation
People have understandably high expectations of Tate and we wanted to create a more visually engaging, streamlined homepage that offers an inviting way to explore Tate.
We've reduced the number of items in the navigation from 11 to just 3. Our decisions are based on putting what users want at the heart of our design process (user centred design). We identified that what visitors to the website and the gallery want most are to learn and understand art (Art & Artists), find out what’s on (Exhibitions & Events) and plan a visit to one of the galleries (Plan Your Visit).
One very common complaint was that it was difficult to figure out what exhibitions and events were on at which gallery. In testing people felt unsure which gallery they were looking at any one time. Understanding which exhibitions were forthcoming and finding previous exhibitions was also overcomplicated.
Our solution is to strip out the filters that aren’t being used, and put those that are prominent at the top of the page. We have worked hard to show the most useful information about events and exhibitions on the listing page. We hope that these changes make it easier to find out what’s on at each of the four Tate galleries and beyond.
Plan Your Visit
One of our big priorities is to make it easy for visitors to plan their visit. Our four galleries are open to all, each with distinct personalities and atmosphere. We wanted to showcase the galleries as different experiences as well as highlighting events and exhibitions. So important logistical information is now more obviously presented, and complemented by useful and inspirational content to help people make the most of their visit.
Free Collection Displays
You can now see which artworks from our collection are on display that you can see for free. Our Display pages mirror how art is shown in each Tate gallery, so visitors can explore our rooms and find out more about the works on show. By adding other useful information such as artist interviews, videos and in-depth articles we hope to deepen people’s understanding about the artworks and artists. And make connections between different pieces of content to provide intriguing journeys through the website.
Exhibition & Events
When we looked at the layout of our event and exhibition pages the main focus was to make sure that the order of the content on the page was useful. As well as bringing a new look and feel to this page, we've tried to present information in a clear manner, making it obvious how to buy a ticket. We also want to showcase interesting and useful content and reflect the in gallery experience.
The way search works is a key behind-the-scenes adjustment to the website. Previously we had two areas of search – one to search the artworks in the Tate collection (over 72,000 of them) and a separate search for the website. We have developed the Tate API (application program interface) to provide a unified way to search through any digital Tate content.
Search results now bring together content from all areas of tate.org.uk and shows it in a useful and ordered way. We will be adding ways to enhance search results, such as artwork strips and content groupings, in the near future.
As we have taken the decision not to rebuild the entire website all at once, there are some areas of tate.org.uk that we’ve not looked at yet. These will be the main focus for the next phase of work.
1 - Art & Artists
Our Collection is a valuable and trustworthy resource about art. We want to offer an immersive and innovative ways to explore this world-class catalogue.
Explore the Collection
2 – Learning
Learning at Tate is for people of all ages, regardless of their level of knowledge or area of interest. We believe that a Tate digital product should work hard to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to engage with, respond to and learn about the art in the national collection. Initially we will focus on developing the offer for Tate Kids as well as enhancing learning journeys for people of all ages.
More about Learning at Tate
3 – Research
Tate’s reputation as a world-class gallery is built in part on its commitment to generating innovative, high-quality research. We want to find new ways of sharing our research expertise with all audiences.
More about Research at Tate
4 – User Profile
We also will be developing the User Profile section of the site to allow personalisation and to integrate Tate Membership and Ticketing in a more streamlined way.
What do you think?
We would like to hear what you think about these changes so we can continue to improve, please send us your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org
Can’t find what you’re looking for?
We have worked really hard to make our website accessible and easy to navigate, but if there is something specific that you can’t find, please let us know at email@example.com